If you take an Audi A4 raise the suspension slightly and throw on plastic body panels. You get the Audi Allroad, it's designed to compete with the Volvo V60 CC and Subaru Outback. With standard Quattro all-wheel-drive and a turbocharged four-cylinder engine, can Audi give a justifiable reason to buy an Allroad over a luxury crossover?
Performance: The Allroad only comes with a 2-liter turbocharged four-cylinder upgraded to 252hp with an eight-speed automatic gearbox. We love how there’s tons of torque at low revs which helps make the engine feel much more flexible around town and on the highway. It also comes with decent running costs too, despite the increase in horsepower over the outgoing model.
Ride & handling: Even though the Allroad has a raised driving position for mild off-roading. The downside is that the Allroad is that there's a bit more body roll than the A4 Avant on which it’s based on. The ride comfort is vastly improved over the previous generation and steering feedback is also much more responsive.
Refinement: The Allroad is quiet and smooth at highway speeds. There's a bit of wind noise, but it can be easily drained out with the radio. Suspension and road noise are also well suppressed.
Behind the wheel: There's a wide range of adjustments for the driver's seat and steering wheel. The instrumental panel is easy to navigate and visibility is great thanks to large glass area.
Space & Practicality: There's enough space for four adults and their luggage. Headroom and legroom and plenty and the boot is a good size as well. The rear seats fold down to add more space, but they don't fold completely flat.
Equipment: Premium trim comes with leather seating surfaces, xenon headlamps, Audi drive select with off-road mode and Audi smartphone interface. You’ll have to step up to the Premium Plus trim to get Full-LED headlights, Bang & Olufsen sound system and Audi’s advanced keyless start with hands-free boot release. Top of the range Prestige adds Audi’s virtual cockpit, head-up display and MMI navigation system with voice control.
Buying & Owning: The Allroad comes with a hefty price tag which is similar to the Volvo V60 CC. Even though the Subaru Outback is much cheaper to buy, it doesn't have the styling appeal of the Audi Allroad. Gas mileage a combined 23 miles to the gallon which is decent for a wagon that has all-wheel-drive and weighs near 4,000lbs. Resale value should be good as with all Audis.
Reliability & Quality: The interior quality is excellent for its class. All the materials feel upscale and the overall impression is superb. Audi hasn't really enjoyed the best reliability record in the past, but from what we've seen in recent years. The question still remains over the longterm reliability of the mechanicals and electronics.
Security & Safety: The Allroad comes with lots of safety equipment, including six airbags and stability control. Rear side airbags are optional. Deadlocks and an alarmn are fitted as stanard to guard against theft.
The Allroad is a nice wagon with plenty of luxury features galore. The engine is decent for the task, and fuel economy is respectable. However the bigger question remains. Why Audi didn't offer the A6 Allroad instead of the A4 based Allroad. The price tag would've been a little more justifiable and overall packaging would've been more convincing seeing that the Volvo V60 CC and Subaru Outback are both larger vehicles with more space. However, if you want a splash of style, wagon practicality and desire the Audi Quattro all-wheel-drive, the Audi Allroad is the perfect car that blends all three very well.
Devon's Pick: Premium Plus adds Xenon headlamps which look better on the Allroad than the halogen headlamps that come standard on the base trim. Plus it feels like an alround better deal than both the base trim and top of the range.
Likes: Restyled exterior is a breath of fresh air. Turbo engine adds the punch you need and still offers decent running costs.
Dislikes: Priced rather steeply and reliability record is still iffy. On road dynamics aren’t as sharp as the sedan.